If you’re like me, on the back of your television is a mangled mass of knotted electrical cables so dense I suspect that small rodents might actually be living in there. In fact, there are so many cables running from DVRs, DVDs, audio systems, etc., that once I get it working properly, I’m afraid to touch any of it.
Well, technology in the form of tiny antennas may soon come to my rescue. Researchers in the Wireless Technology and Antenna groups at Virginia Tech are researching ways to reduce the size of wideband antennas for use in handheld devices. One potential commercial application of these new antennas could be in connecting all of your home entertainment equipment through short-range broadband communications links rather than the wires that we currently use. Imagine connecting your Tivo and BlueRay player to your television wirelessly!
One version of such an antenna is shown here. While this test unit is only about the size of a quarter, newer prototypes are smaller still. The small size means that such features would not only be easily integrated into various devices, but they would also be inexpensive enough to fit into current price ranges of home entertainment systems, for example.
Since I no longer have any teenagers around to explain how all my fancy electronics work, I am for anything that will simplify life and allow me to watch NCAA football…er, I mean…technology shows on the Discovery Channel or PBS. Yeah, that’s it.
So, you folks in Electrical Engineering need to pull those thinking caps down a little tighter on your heads and move this stuff into the marketplace ASAP, because my man-cave is going to be ready for the 2010 fall football season at the end of August, and I am NOT going to try to connect all that stuff up again…